Philippe Sands, professor of law at University College London and author of Torture Team: Rumsfeld’s Memo and the Betrayal of American Values, discusses Douglas J. Feith’s role in coming up with the twisted excuse for abandoning the Geneva Conventions in the name of saving them, the “necessity” excuse invoked by participants in the decision making process, the dismissal, last week, of the charges against the tortured “20th hijacker” al Quatani, the complete lack of evidence against him, his understanding that the torture at Guantanamo was limited to a few cases, the migration and escalation of “aggressive” interrogation tactics and the threat to the bad apples at the top of America’s torture policy due to the immunity clause of the Military Commissions Act of 2006.
MP3 here. (23:04)
Philippe Sands is Professor of Law and Director of the Center on International Courts and Tribunals in the Faculty, and a key member of staff in the Center for Law and the Environment at University College London. His teaching areas include public international law, the settlement of international disputes (including arbitration), and environmental and natural resources law.
Philippe is a regular commentator on the BBC and CNN and writes frequently for leading newspapers. He is frequently invited to lecture around the world, and in recent years has been a Visiting Professor at the University of Toronto (2005), the University of Melbourne (2005) and the Universite de Paris I (Sorbonne) (2006, 2007). He has previously held academic positions at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, Kings College London and , University of Cambridge and was a Global Professor of Law at New York University from 1995-2003. He was co-founder of FIELD (Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development), and established the programmes on Climate Change and Sustainable Development. He is a member of the Advisory Boards of the European Journal of International Law and Review of European Community and International Environmental Law (Blackwell Press). In 2007 he served as a judge for the Guardian First Book Prize award.
As a practicing barrister he has extensive experience litigating cases before the International Court of Justice, the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, the International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, and the European Court of Justice. He frequently advises governments, international organisations, NGOs and the private sector on aspects of international law. In 2003 he was appointed a Queen’s Counsel. He has been appointed to lists of arbitrators maintained by ICSID and the PCA.